When leader’s master the ethical challenges associated with leadership, they cast light. However, when leaders abuse power, withhold privileges, fail to be reliable, abandon their duties, misplace or fail to be faithful to loyalties, or lack to manage information, they cast shadows. Leaders are often faced by ethical dilemmas and. When faced by these dilemmas, leaders portray various qualities that cast light. This paper is aimed at identifying various ethical dilemmas that have an impact on managerial decisions. In order to achieve this, this paper will examine three peer reviewed articles on ethical dilemmas facing leaders.
Many ethical dilemmas are as a result of the poor character of leaders. Christian characteristics are exhibited by good leaders. Characteristics of a Christian include diligence, kindness, love, good morals, self-discipline, perseverance, knowledgeable and above all godliness. These characteristics complement one other. Possession of one or some of these characteristics does not make one a good leader.
An ethical challenge is a situation which involves a decision between right and wrong. Life poses a series of these ethical challenges. In most scenarios, the wrong decision is more appealing and profitable to the leader. The wrong decisions result in corruption, fraud, poor quality and above all injustice.
The first article, “Moral Courage in Healthcare: Acting Ethically Even in the Presence of Risk,” discusses the leadership qualities portrayed by a nurse by the name Mary. Emily was an employee at a medical center. During her time at the company, Mary discovered that the supervisor was falsifying training records in order to improve staffing levels. Trainee nurses were being approved before the completion of their program .
On making this discovery, Mary was faced by the ethical decision on whether to ignore this issue, or take action. Eventually, she decided to take action, She reported this to the more senior nurses. To her disappointment, the nurses were scared of retaliation if they took any action. She went ahead to report this to the hospital administration. The result, the supervisor started harassing her by hindering her career development, unreasonable shifts that changed often without notice, misinformation and unreasonable deadlines.
This retaliation from her supervisor did not stop her. Mary understood her moral obligation to uphold the highest ethical and professional standards within her profession. She proceeded to seek help from the medical centers ethicist, who encouraged to fight for what she knew to be ethical. Mary’s supervisor lacked the courage to serve. Mary on the hand, had the courage to participate in transformation. This article demonstrates the shadow of power . The biblical principle violated is diligence.
The second article “Leadership and Management in Engineering” studies a tragedy that occurred in Kansas City at the Hyatt Regency. A sky walk was built for people to watch a tea party from. As it turns out, the designs were not designed properly. There was poor communication between the steel manufacturing vendor and the engineer. The vendor assumed incomplete designs were complete. The engineer also did not also thoroughly check the vendors request for changes by the steel manufacturer. As a result, there were over 100 fatalities and hundreds injured .
This engineer failed to practice integrity. They were in a hurry to complete the Hyatt project. Delays also meant extra cost. Honest leaders are truthful when dealing with others. The engineers cast the shadow of mismanaged information. The engineers violated the integrity biblical principle.
The third article is “Apple’s new leader faces ethical dilemmas at Foxconn.” Tim Cooks took over leadership of apple at a time when one of its supplier companies in china was on crisis. Employees were threatening to commit suicide in protest of harsh working conditions. An earlier attempt by 18 workers, had resulted in 14 fatalities. The employees had been complaining about long working hours and low wages. Tim Cook managed to stop the second suicide attempt by over 150 employees .
Various leadership qualities are exhibited in this case. They include compassion, prudence and justice. Prudence assists in proper decision making. Compassion means putting others interest before ones. Justice means treating others in fairness and equality. Steve Jobs cast a shadow of misplaced and broken loyalties. The biblical principle violated is the principle of compassion.
In conclusion, a leader’s true quality is exhibited when he/she is faced by an ethical dilemma. The decisions made by these leaders reveal their leadership qualities. The cast of shadow or light is evident in the outcome of their decisions. These ethical dilemmas assist these leaders develop their character.
Hinks, P. (2012, January 1). Apple’s new leader faces ethical dilemmas at Foxconn. Retrieved from Leaders We Deserve: https://leaderswedeserve.wordpress.com/2012/01/31/apples-new-leader-faces-ethical-dilemmas-at-foxconn/
Johnson, C. E. (2012). Meeting the Ethical Challenges of Leadership: Casting Light Or Shadow. Los Angeles: Sage.
Murray, J. S. (2010). Moral Courage in Healthcare: Acting Ethically Even in the Presence of Risk. OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 15(3).
Starrett, S. (2013). Engineers Face Ethical Dilemmas. Leadership and Management in Engineering, 13(1), 49-50.